July 10, 2016

SUMMER SERIES

A little extra bulletin space during the summer weeks enables us to run a full article in four weekly segments. The topic is HOPE and is taken from a leading journal of contemporary Spirituality, SPIRITUAL LIFE (Summer 2012)

Each installment will be posted on the web-page sequentially by bulletin date.

WEEK I SERIES ON HOPE
FEAR OF THE FUTURE:
HOPE’S CHALLENGE
Mary Paul Curti, OCD

With trepidation, Fear of the Future invades the minds of not only the young, seeking employment and financial stability, and the elderly, searching for adequate health care in their evening years, but it effects those in middle age whose labors and compassionate care of the above leave them drained of courage, strength, and alternatives to despair. Fear of the future seeps into the seams of our joys, our accomplishments, and our aspirations to rob us of peace and stifle our initiatives. Such fear has no place in the Christian life.

Do our times have a greater fear of the future than former times? There does seem to be more to provoke it. However, in every age, fear of the future has pervaded our lives, like a nagging canker sore, because of our human desire to know what is to come, to feel secure in a solid future, and to be released of worry and anxiety. We want to know what is ahead of us, as though we could prepare and ward off what is undesirable. The future is in God’s hands and will unfold for us as his wisdom designs.

This fear of the future, however, could hinder our spiritual growth and leave us bereft of that peace which comes from trusting in God. Again, such fear must not prevail if we are to grow in the spiritual life.

In a world that faces current struggles and near despair with economic, political, and natural disruptions, we are faced with disastrous consequences affecting everyone. Is the future one of irreversible tragedy? On what do we stand for security? Millions of people are without sufficient food, education, shelter, medicine, support, and love. Whence comes hope? God alone is its author, and God has manifested its presence in the lives of faithful Christians of the past and of our present time. Hope asks us to rely upon the divine promise the angel Gabriel gave to Mary at the Annunciation: “With God all things are possible” (Lk 1:37). It was Paul who wrote:
We boast in hope of the glory of God…Hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit that has been given to us.
(Rom 5:2,5)

Hope Does Not Disappoint
To believe and to rely upon the words of Scripture that “hope does not disappoint” is to expect from God, whose word is true, all that we need to remain within the flow of God’s grace and mercy, guiding us in every circumstance, “because the love of God has been poured out into our heart.” The Holy Spirit has been given to us to be our hope. In the midst of turmoil, we may ask, “How can the future become permeated with a renewed hope?” Where do prayer and union with God fit into the scheme of our desire for security and peace? Surely there is some assurance to be found that rests upon faith and trust in God.

Without hope, our fears will only intensify. The future will look bleak, because we would easily forget the confident gratitude we owe God and God’s unshakable promise of his Presence with us always: “And remember I am with you always to the end of the age” (Mt 28:20). Our human need to rest on solid ground or, at least, to feel some stableness in our footing, will bring us to rely upon the only One who can enable us to live with the fear and learn from it.

Fear of the Future
We all have need for peace in our deepest center. I believe God asks of us what he asked of the Virgin Mary: to trust in God and hope in his promises each day of our lives. In our darkness, we hope God will be light, and God is, although we often fail to see because we do not look. In our weakness, we hope God will provide strength, and God does, although we may not recognize it or welcome it. In our sin, we hope God will forgive, and God always does, although we may not accept it. The virtue of hope, to be transforming, must suffuse our troubled hearts like a soothing balm that heals and restores our frail faith. What must take place is transformation, a new look at life, a renewed perspective resting upon the power and presence of God. To be able to say, “Be it done to me according to your Word,” is to put trust in the only One upon whom we can rely to fulfill all of his promises,
because we have our hope set on the living God, who is the Savior of all people, especially of those who believe. (1Tm 4:10)

Mary Paul Curti, OCD, is a founding member of the Carmel of the Assumption, Latrobe, PA. She has served in her community as Prioress, Councilor, Directress of Formation, and Treasurer. Her book, Sounding Solitude, was published by ICS in June of 2010.

Communications/Indian & Black Leper/Catholic University
Next weekend’s collection is a combined collection. Catholic Communications Campaign funding enabled live streaming of the various events and was involved in the massive social media effort during Pope Francis’ visit to the US. Catholic University plays a vital role in the American landscape where students receive an education rich in Catholic thought and tradition. The Black and Indian Mission Collection is all about evangelization to promote the faith to people in remote parts of the US as well as in impoverished inner-cities.

CARNIVAL NEWS

St. Philip Carnival

The Carnival Committee wishes to thank all workers and parishioners who helped at the 37th Annual Carnival.

There will be a Carnival Appreciation Night on Monday, July 11th at 7:30 PM in Marian Hall. Carnival results will be reviewed followed by refreshments.

MINISTRIES AND ORGANIZATIONS

Widow/Widowers

  • The Monday Night Group: July 25th at 6:30
  • The New & Recently Bereaved Group: Wednesday, July 13th and 27th at 7:00 PM.

Prime Timers
Atlantic City Casino Bus Ride

  • Trip to Resorts Casino in Atlantic City on Thursday, July 14th
  • Must be 21 years old and over
  • Price is $25.00 with a casino bonus of $25.00.
  • Photo ID needed to get Casino bonus from Resorts or get one there, free of charge.
  • Call Barbara Rzepecki early to reserve your bus seating at 973-278-1566.

St. Philip’s Players
Come join us offstage. We welcome and will train parishioners for ALL technical positions, stage managers, and scenic designers. Call us at 973-607-1924 or stphilipsplayers@aol.com.

Nunsense! Coming in September

To read complete bulletin click here